RGU launches new pathway into radiography profession

The School of Health Sciences is set to launch a new Master of Science in Diagnostic Radiography in January 2012. The degree programme will offer undergraduates hailing from a variety of science and health backgrounds swift passage into a dynamic new career.

The MSc Diagnostic Radiography will be delivered full-time over two years through a combination of academic study and clinical education. Students will learn to produce and interpret medical images, and use sophisticated modalities such as X-rays, computed tomography (CT), Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and Ultrasound, ultimately helping them contribute to the diagnosis of illness, and the monitoring and management of disease processes.

On campus, students will participate in traditional lectures and practical classes while also utilising online learning facilities. Clinical simulation sessions will take place within the Faculty of Health and Social Care’s fully-operational digital imaging X-ray suite and digital image library.

As clinical education is a core element of the programme, students will embark on five clinical placements that will be integrated across the two years of study, and carried out within major regional centres, district general hospitals, community hospitals and remote hospitals across Scotland.

Successful completion of this course will allow students to apply for registration with the Health Professions Council as a diagnostic radiographer. From there, they will be able to enter one of many career routes including accident and emergency, general radiography, interventional imaging, paediatrics and image reporting, as well as specialist imaging modalities such as ultrasound, CT, MRI and radionuclide imaging.

The course, which is still open to applicants, is proving to be of interest to a wide range of professionals including ex-forces and those from general science backgrounds who have studied human anatomy and physiology.

Ian Henderson, course leader of the new MSc programme, said: “This is an exciting new offering for graduates and professionals from a wide array of backgrounds. The role of the radiographer has changed significantly over the decades, with many now also reporting on the images to provide an efficient service for patients. Graduates of this programme will be able to take their place as autonomous practitioners, improving patient care and making significant contributions to senior management within the NHS.” 

Commenting on the abilities he and his colleagues are looking to instil within their new students, Ian continued: “Self-confidence and strong problem-solving skills are vital traits for diagnostic radiographers to develop, and this programme has been specifically designed with this in mind. Throughout the course, students will take increasing responsibility for their own learning to encourage them to analyse problems and critically evaluate solutions under their own steam. With the support of staff and their fellow students, they will be able to make the leap into an exciting new career.”

To find out more about the new MSc Diagnostic Radiography programme at Robert Gordon University visit the webpage.


High resolution images of students working within the university’s x-ray suite are available from the communications office on request.

Notes to editor

Facts about Radiography
•    A recent survey indicated that approximately 97% of the population will have contact with a radiographer during their lives. This can include attending:
-    An accident and emergency department following trauma.
-    An emergency admission to hospital when acutely unwell.
-    Ultrasound examinations during pregnancy or investigation of symptoms.
-    As part of a screening programme such as mammography.
-    For Computed Tomography (e.g. CT of the head).
-    Magnetic Resonance Imaging (e.g. MRI to investigate back pain). 
-    Nuclear medicine scan (e.g. a bone scan).

Radiography Education in Aberdeen
•    Aberdeen is recognised across the UK and beyond for its rich history of radiography education and training, having only just celebrated its 75 year anniversary at the end of October 2011. Originally established within Aberdeen Royal Infirmary in 1936, the School of Radiography initially trained a small number of radiographers who undertook a diploma qualification that was delivered by radiologists, senior radiographers and specialists from within the x-ray departments.

Today, radiography education is delivered within RGU's School of Health Sciences, having transferred from the NHS in 1990. The programmes are highly subscribed to with an average of 80 students per year across undergraduate and postgraduate levels; plus specialist graduate certificates and continuous professional development programmes.

•    The role of radiographers has changed significantly over the decades, with many now also reporting on the images to provide an efficient service for patients. They are taking their place as autonomous  practitioners improving patient care and also making increasing contributions to senior management within the NHS. In order to do so, they are required to take part in postgraduate study.

Andrew Youngson 
Communications Officer | Faculty of Health and Social Care
Robert Gordon University
AB10 1FR
Tel: 01224 262389